Phone alert system could save lives - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Phone alert system could save lives

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October 2, 2007

Cairo-- One phone call could save your life. That's what the Grady County Emergency Management Agency says, and they're hoping you'll take advantage of it .  "Its a tool that hopefully we'll never have to use but its there in case of an emergency," says Jim Ellis, Director of Grady County's Emergency Management Agency. 

CodeRED is a system that helps emergency workers get the word out about impending danger. A pre-recorded message can deliver a thousand calls a minute.  "If you had an impending storm or something or a chemical spill and you had to evacuate a block or an area it would give them an alert to let them know they need to be getting out of there homes or whatever at this time," Ellis explains.

Emergency Medical Services Director Billy Rathel says the system will serve as a planning tool for his department.  "If something is going on in the county such as possible tornados it will help us in the planning of that so we will know how to bring in more staff and know what part of the county might receive multiple casualties," Rathel says.

Individuals and businesses need to make sure they register for the service.   Ellis says, "The system is only as good as the information that's put into it."  If you're listed in the phonebook you should automatically be enrolled in the system. But as an extra precaution or if you have an unlisted number you should call the Grady Emergency Management Agency or you can register online.

And its up to you to decide how you're called.  "Some people nowadays don't have a landline they have cell numbers so you can contact them anyway they want to be contacted," says Ellis.  Either way, "It gives us another tool to alert our citizens and keep them informed," says Rathel.  And emergency officials want to be sure you get the message.

To register for CodeRED call Grady County EMA at (229) 378-2271.  Or you can register online.

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